Menghai Tea Factory (berylleb on ebay)
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Recent Tasting Notes
This is thought of as a high-level ripe product from Dayi but I am underwhelmed by this particular harvest. It is a smooth drinking shou but I find the flavor profile quite boring. I do not see how it could mature into more flavor after more aging so I am unable to recommend it. Cakes using this formula from other years are much better.
This is a rich, smooth and mellow tea and this premium shou does not disappoint. Easy to drink; smooth and mellow; full of flavor. The cake presents very dark leaves – on the smaller side; fairly tight compression. Double rinse and then multiple steeps yielding a perfectly clear dark reddish brown tea liquor. The flavor sits densely in the middle of the mouth, radiating sweetness and hints of tangy leather and dark chocolate. The tea never seems to get bitter even when pushed, and is consistently giving me the same quality right from the start to the end. Very much enjoyed my session with this tea and I am left alert, my lips buzzing.
mmmmmm boychik sent this one my way and ive been saving it for a day when i could drink it all day long! :) Rather than take a long series of notes on this, i wanted to just sit and enjoy it. Overall impressions – this is a fantastic puerh! I highly recommend it to anyone wanting a great journey.
this was a bold, strong tea to begin with and lasted for maaaaaaany maaaany steeps. Initial steeps were sort of earthy but also sweet and smooth. i picked up leathery notes and what i guess i would call sort of citrusy? i think i’m going to have to track this one down and pick up a cake. thank you so much boychik. I’ve really loved some of these fantastic offerings you sent my way!
This tea made me so so so so so so so so so SO happy. Of happiness.
Only one rinse was needed and the color is deeper than ruby, like a garnet. And AllanK was right – zero fermentation flavor, no dirty flavors. This tastes like chocolate mushrooms. That may not sound appetizing, but I assure you, it’s the fucking BOMB, yo.
This is my new fave shou. Thanks for the sample, Allan!!!!
I did one session with three steeps, then another, then another. A total of 9 steeps, which got smoother as they went along.
From the start, I felt buzzy. At one point during the 2nd session, I realized that I dazed out. When I came to, I felt kind of dizzy and happy. Tea drunk, indeed!
I also kept staring into the cup, kind of mesmerized by the color.
To sum up: WOW. So yumz. Much happy. Wow. So garnet. Tea drunkies.
This tea has cleared. It has virtually no fermentation flavor left. It is among the very best of Puerhs. There is a slight, very slight bitterness in the early infusions. This soon goes away and you are left with a smooth ripe puerh with a little bit of natural sweetness. There are a plethora of flavor notes to this tea. I detected chocolate, and I am not sure if it was because I added a small amount of sugar, but I also detected caramel.
I steeped this 10 times in a 130ml Yixing teapot. I used 4.5g leaf and boiling water. I steeped it for 15 sec, 15 sec, 15 sec, 15 sec, 15 sec, 30 sec, 30 sec, 1 min, 1 min, 2 min. Berylleb King Tea has done an excellent job with the storage of this puerh. I am considering buying a second so I have one for future years.
This is a nice basic ripe puerh. It has a nice somewhat sweet flavor with not off taste and still some fermentation flavor left. I didn’t give this the full gongfu route. I steeped it twice in a 10 oz mug for 15 sec at boiling. It is good.
I thoroughly enjoy this tea. I bought a cake a couple years ago and went through it pretty fast. From what I remember it is a light shou, not too dark or earthy but with a light finish and uplifting energy. It is aptly named “Clouds”. My most memorable experience with this tea is that I brought it in a tea thermos during the birth of my first child. I went through several steppings as we waited nearly 11 hours from the time we got to the hospital until her birth. I ordered another cake and will likely keep it for storage until I can share it with my daughter and tell her that this is the same tea your dad was drinking on the day you were born. Obviously, this is a special tea for me.
For me, this is a tea that changes dramatically depending on the vessel it is served in. I’m not a big fan of this tea in the traditional small tea cups. The flavor is deep and rich with not a lot of complexity when served in this manner. I’d give it a 64. However, when served in a standard american mug the flavor improves dramatically! A sweetness comes out to complement the richness of the tea. Dark, rich and sweet this tea is one of my favorites when I am on the go, such as in the car or at a seminar when I can do gong fu. I’ll still brew it using a yixing or chinese tea pot and combine 2 steepings in the mug. In this manner I’ll give it a 90. Not bad from one of the traditional Dayi recipes.
7g 180ml gaiwan 212F
rinse twice/pause/ 10/10/15/15/15/20/20/30/45/45sec
This shou is very pleasant. Sweet woody creamy with some wine notes. The brew is dark burgundy color, so pretty. Its mellow, no off putting smell or taste. very nice and relaxing. first couple steeps numbed my tongue.
It has been months since I first tried this shu sample from boychik, but I have been thinking about it a lot lately, and remembering it as one of the best shu puerhs I’ve ever had. I only have a couple of servings left but I had to have some today to see if it is as good as I remember it…and also to ask if ANYONE knows how I can get more of this cake? I’ve searched online and I guess it is sold out. Sadness!
I know there will always be new puerhs to try and fall in love with though, maybe someday ones even better than this one.
I am only on steep #1 right now but it is all velvety smoothness and cocoa richness…ahhhhh :)
A very pleasant smooth and mellow medium-heavy shu. When mrmopar gives a 100, one takes notice! So I bought a cake based on his and the other reviews. I liked it quite a bit, but maybe not quite as much as others. It goes down easy. I did not find much complexity in the flavor, but it is quite soothing.
I’d like to thank Tea Explorer for sending me a generous sample of this one!!
6G + 4oz yixing (rinse) X 15sec/30sec…etc….
I started sipping on this hours ago, & am still enjoying it. This is one of those rich & deep Shu’s that remind me of Boston Brown bread. I’ve never ordered to from Berylleb, yet…
First a big thank you to mrmopar, whose tasting notes made me aware of this shu and whose guidance steered me to a reputable seller.
This is, without a doubt, the finest shu I have tasted to date. Rounded and full, powerful in the early steeps, but not overbearing and never bitter or astringent. Notes of leather, cedar, chicory, minerals, mushrooms, citrus and pepper make appearances in various combinations as the steeps progress, with each taking a turn at prominence yet never overshadowing the others. The aroma is refined and never funky. My notes show a range of earthy scents (clean damp earth, loamy earth, hints of peat, fresh rain, clean wet hay) with an underlying sweetness throughout. The liquor runs the gamut of reds, from nearly opaque through ruby, and will transition to a deep amber if you give it enough steeps.
It seems to benefit from adequate leaf quantity and fairly short steeps. Although I have not come up with a definitive Gong Fu regimen for this, I’m leaning towards a baseline of 6 grams per 100 ml (scaled up linearly to my pot size at 7.8 grams and 130 ml). I use 212 F water, give it a single 15 second rinse and a 2 minute pause to allow the leaves to begin to open up. My steeps run 15 / 6 / 8 / 10 / 15 / 20 / 25 / 30 seconds, with the first steep running a little long to allow the tea to finish opening up.
This is one shu I’ll buy more of to give a couple of cakes time to age. Absolutely stunning IMO.
Hitting this one again. 5s rinse; 5s rinse; let it sit for 15m to open up.
Clear liquid; sweet smell with a little sweet pastry coming through; the sip is smooth and sweet. Enjoying this one as much as I did the last time. Took it through three steepings so far; have not found the slight kick of pepper yet (but probably later). What’s not to like about a thick & mellow tea with long-lasting after taste sweetness. This one is a keeper!
Mellow and pleasant taste; nice aroma as it brews; dark red clear tea liquor; smooth and rich in flavor – this is a winning shou! The oaky sip delights the mouth and leaves a sweet aftertaste with a little pepper sensation on the tongue. I quite enjoy this now but I am very anxious to see how it develops after another year or two of aging.
Continuing with this one….
I’ve enjoyed this puer over the last four days. Each session relies upon the original 5g of tea for 3 steeps with 3-4oz of boiling water then each steep is dumped into a 12 oz travel mug to be enjoyed throughout the afternoon.
2nd day: Still sweet (but less so now); nice chestnut color.
3rd day: A certain amount of earthiness is now creeping in; no longer as rich and sweet.
4th day: Much lighter color even after 8 min steeps; mild yet pleasant woodsy flavor; enjoyable but not much left to give here.
I took the same leaves through 12 steeps and it held up quite well. I’ve been working off a sample and I think I have enough to do this again soon. As for the full cake, I think I’m going to age it for another year and let the deliciousness continue to grow. I’ll look forward to celebrating the beginning of 2015 with it. Highly recommend this Shou!